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Thread: past perfect


    • Join Date: Jul 2006
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    #1

    past perfect

    Dear sir,
    In fact I've a big probleme explaining why the past perfect is used instead of the past simple in stories,so I've chosen a story that is called"Time machine"
    by"H.G.Wells"&I'll ask you the reasons for which the past simple/past perfect is used.Is that o.k?Does that bother you at all?


    • Join Date: Aug 2005
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    #2

    Re: past perfect

    Hi,
    I don't quite agree with you when you say that the past perfect is used in stories instead of the past simple. The past simple is the appropriate tense for telling stories. This said, we use the past perfect to refer to actions/events that happened before the actions/events we are talking about. If for instance you say:"When Hyena arrived, Hare ran into the bus", you mean that Hyena arrived before Hare ran into the bush. But you say"Hyena arrived but Hare had run into the bush", you mean that Hyena arrived after the action (Hare ran into the bush).
    Does it make sense for you?

    Raguilli


    • Join Date: Jul 2006
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    #3

    Re: past perfect

    Dear sir,
    First of all thank you very much for your reply & I hope we'll get on well together,actually I didn't mean that we use the past perfect all the time what I meant is that I'll ask you why we used it normally for the reason isn't always the same & I want to practice it,do you see?.So,why don't we begin but befor that I'm going to ask you in this message about present perfect & then begin with the past perfect,In this message I'm
    dealing with a very important & difficult matter:present perfect,
    in fact I`ve understood the whole grammar of this tense but have one idea that hasn`t been clearified by any teacher or even expert I`ve met&I hope you`ll answer fully & make me understand it but befor that please make all your talk & explanations about British English only no thing to do with AE.( I`ve read"the exact time at which an action happened isn`t important"what did the writer mean by"it isn`t important"& when is it important?, on the other
    hand I`ve read"sometimes the speaker mayn`t mention a specific time but they do have one specific time in mind"how do we know that the speaker has that specific time in mind if the time isn`t mentioned?this is point1.point2 is that I`ve had several examples which I don`t know why the past simple/present perfect is used.-A-"I`m very angry because he shot my dog"
    why didn`t the speaker say "because he`s shot my dog",as there`s a present result?-B-compare1-"I`ve accepted an invitation to Terry`s house for dinner"but"I received an invitation to Jannet`s party,I can`t wait to go!" why is the present perfect used in the first one but not in the second one?
    -C-why is it possible to use both the past simple & present perfect in this sentence"I`m afraid I tore/have torn the news paper so it`s difficult to read"
    D-"Have you ever seen a magic show?~no,but my sister saw David copperfield"why is the past simple used with"saw"& not the present perfect although the time isn`t mentioned"-E-"I`ve drawn several pictures today,I drew them on drawing-paper"when I asked an english teacher why we used the past simple in the second one but the present perfect in the first one,he said"because when talking about a verb that has been already talked about we use the past simple & because "on drawing-paper"so what did he mean by"because of 'on drawing-paper'"?-F-"we`re engaged to be married,you`re the first people we`ve told -except for my parents-Why is the present perfect used with "told"-G-I`ve read"we`re happy because you`ll marry our daughter.We give our consent to your engagement.Though we`ve only met you once when you came here for a short time last christmase "why is the present perfect used with"meet"although there`s a specific time (i.e when you came here for a short time)-H-"In different parts of England,there`re different pronunciations"~"yes!I noticed that"why didn`t the speaker say "I`ve noticed that",since he didn`t mention when & because I`ve met some phrases like"I`ve noticed etc.."?( there`re other examples in the next message)thank you very very much for answering in advance.

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    #4

    Re: past perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by bayan said
    Dear sir,
    In fact I've a big probleme explaining why the past perfect is used instead of the past simple in stories,so I've chosen a story that is called"Time machine"
    by"H.G.Wells"&I'll ask you the reasons for which the past simple/past perfect is used.Is that o.k?Does that bother you at all?
    I don't think that would be a problem for any of the teachers here.
    They are here to help you always.

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